From tv to films: a tough task

The immense popularity of the small screen has resulted in a ‘reel’ shot in arm for its leading stars who are also making their way into ‘big pictures’. Almost every leading tele-serial actor and actress is constantly making a debut in movies, but not all of them have managed to repeat their telly magic on the silver screen too. While the doors for small screen actors to get onto the silver screen are getting wider in film industry, their low success rate has also been a worrying aspect for popular talents who have already proven their metal on television. It is mostly new filmmakers and low budget ventures that are providing these telly actors with an opportunity, helping them take smaller steps to make it big on the silver screen. Bengaluru Chronicle reports.

Actress Ranjani Raghavan of the Puttagowri Maduve fame, who has so far acted in three films, plans to concentrate only on films post her TV venture. Ragini says, “It is a huge task to sustain playing a character for years. I may not take up another TV venture after Puttagowri comes to an end. Despite all the success, the audience tends to forget, and moves on after a successful serial is wrapped up. An actor has to redo all that hard work for another brand new venture.” 

In the past, there have been many actors who have made this transition with ease. “There have been a handful of actors who started with television before they made it ‘reel’ big. Stars like Darshan, Yash, Ganesh, Radhika Pandit, Duniya Vijay, Srinagara Kitty are amongst those who rose to stardom via the small screen. Likewise, there have been numerous examples of actors who did tread a similar path, but unfortunately failed to reach the desired destination  that of making it on the silver screen. Most of the successful actors who made this journey are from the past when there were only a limited number of shows and TV channels. Now, the situation is a lot more competitive with programmes and shows in Kannada alone touching the 100 mark,” says filmmaker Srinivas.

The trend is mostly to do with the smaller film makers. “At present, new filmmakers are experimenting with different kinds of experimental ventures, which are usually low or average budget ones, and are also eyeing popular small screen actors to boost their chances. Some have managed to sustain the big competition and many are simply struggling to find a foothold in the film industry,” he adds.

Producer Naveen feels that the popularity of an actor, be it on the small screen or even established film stars alone cannot guarantee that a movie will succeed. “Yes, a lot of small screen actors are being cast in a majority of films these days. It is a win-win situation for both artistes and new filmmakers. A small screen actor is famous as long as he is a part of a successful show or a programme. A lot of them have sacrificed their television success to make it big, and have eventually cursed themselves when their projects have bombed,” Naveen says.

Some have even returned to television after their movies have failed to do well at the box office.

“Even the small screen is encouraging artistes to take up movies as it boosts their projects. It is difficult to do both TV shows and movies. Some are taking short breaks from the TV to try their luck in movies,” film director Prashanth sums up.

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